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ProctorU Proposes Student Bill of Rights for Remote Learning

Doing school work remotely presents some unique challenges. For one, teachers can't necessarily see how a student is accomplishing class work and may therefore make faulty assumptions about how it was done; and two, the education technology that facilitates online learning collects data on the student and the interactions, frequently without the student even knowing, let alone opting in.

Now, ProctorU, an education technology company that specializes in online proctoring, has proposed a "student bill of rights." The goal is to develop a level playing field for students as schools continue delivering classes online.

The document covers seven areas of expectations students should be able to count on from their academic institutions:

  • The right to have questions about digital or remote academic work "answered clearly and promptly";

  • The expectation that a student's work is presumed to be done with "honesty and integrity";

  • The presumption that anybody involved in the remote work is complying with privacy laws and policies related to student privacy and student data;

  • The right to expect that there are policies and procedures in place for ensuring and maintaining the integrity of student work;

  • The right to review policies that might place students at an unfair disadvantage compared to others who might choose to use "inappropriate or unauthorized tools, tactics or assistance";

  • The right to understand what and why data is collected and stored, and how it is being used; and

  • The expectation that data collection is specific and limited.

"Taking a test or doing work online should be no different than doing that same work in person, in a classroom," said Scott McFarland, CEO of ProctorU, in a statement. "There's no reason students should feel their work is more at risk, that the integrity standards are any different or that they have to surrender any more privacy to be online. Students should be protected in all of those areas."

More importantly, he added, the policies and procedures related to integrity and privacy should be understandable and allow the student to "make good decisions."

The company is hoping to spark discussion about the bill of rights on its dedicated website.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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